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Thread: Polamalu steals the show at afternoon practice

  1. #1
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    Polamalu steals the show at afternoon practice

    • Mike Tomlin preaches the importance of situational football, and that was the highlight of Friday's late afternoon practice at St. Vincent. The Steelers practiced their two-minute offense for the first time this camp, but it was safety Troy Polamalu who stole the show. Polamalu made two impressive plays that suggest the veteran safety is all the way back from a calf injury that plagued him a year ago. Polamalu chased down Antonio Brown in the backfield on a wide-receiver screen on the first play of the drill and smacked the ball away from Brown near the goal line on the final play to keep the offense out of the end zone. Ben Roethlisberger went 5 of 9 for 45 yards and came up short on back-to-back passes in the end zone to Brown. With five seconds left, Ike Taylor was called for pass interference in the end zone on Brown, forcing an untimed down from the 15-yard line in which Polamalu batted away on a quick slant intended for Brown again.

    • The Steelers continued to mix up drills during training camp with a goal-line passing drill that was dominated by the offense. The prettiest catch of the period was Brown's acrobatic back-shoulder fade from Roethlisberger that bounced in the air before coming to rest in Brown's hands with Taylor hanging all over him. During the same drill, rookie receiver Justin Brown made safety Ryan Clark look foolish when Brown faked outside and caught a short touchdown pass over the middle.

    • Tomlin said to not read anything into it, but he moved his tackles around, flipping Marcus Gilbert to the right and Mike Adams to the left. The two stayed at their positions throughout the entire practice. They are expected to return to their normal positions Saturday.

    • Cornerback Curtis Brown filled in for the injured Cortez Allen at cornerback and continued to struggle. He was beat a number of times during individual and team drills.

    • Sure, the Steelers want use a lot of zone blocking this year, but they still can run the power. That was evident when guard Ramon Foster pulled and opened a hole for Le'Veon Bell to get through for a long gain.

    — Mark Kaboly

    2017 Mock

    1. T.J Watt, OLB/DE, Wisconsin - will be a huge mistake if available and we pass

    2. Cordrea Tankersley, CB, Clemson

    3. Josh Jones, S, N.C. State

    3. Adam Shaheen, TE, Ashland

    4. Trey Hendrickson, DE, Florida Atlantic

    5. Josh Reynolds, WR, Texas A&M

    6. Barry Sanders, RB, Oklahoma State (How can you go wrong with that name, however the sample size is so small that his dad may be better even in his 50's)

    7. Alec Torgersen, QB, Pennsylvania

  2. #2

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    Not much has been written about it, but the team needs Troy to be Troy this season especially if any starting CBs miss games.

    And I was a big fan of resigning Foster. He is a better player than most seem to acknowledge and I predict he will contribute this season in a big way.
    Last edited by NorthCoast; 08-04-2013 at 10:20 AM.

  3. #3
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    I haven't read one encouraging word on curtis brown during the entire camp.

    cortez really needs to get, and stay healthy.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by NorthCoast View Post
    Not much has been written about it, but the team needs Troy to be Troy this season especially if any starting CBs miss games.
    Agree completely. Troy looked like himself towards the end of last season (as did Harrison ) and I think he'll again be the monster we know and love this year.
    <a href= target=_blank></a>

  5. #5
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    OMG! They ran a WR screen (on the first play even!) and Troy knew it was coming? How in the world could he possibly know that???

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    And I was a big fan of resigning Foster. He is a better player than most seem to acknowledge and I predict he will contribute this season in a big way.

  7. #7

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    Encouraging signs for Troy Polamalu

    August 26, 2013
    By Ed Bouchette / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

    Steelers safety Troy Polamalu dives to tackle Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles in the first quarter Saturday night.

    The Steelers have picked up one of the NFL's best defensive players and he could make a huge impact in 2013.

    His name is Troy Polamalu.

    For the third preseason game in a row, Polamalu played like it was 2010. That was his NFL Defensive Player of the Year season. If he can keep this up, the Steelers will have added a valued piece to a defense that mostly went missing in 2012. And they will have both Jerome Bettis and an unnamed physical therapist from California to thank for it.

    Polamalu was up to his old disruptive self Saturday night against the Kansas City Chiefs. He helped blow up several plays, including the fourth-and-1 Chiefs gamble that Jarvis Jones and Ziggy Hood were credited for stopping in the first quarter.

    "He looks good, man," fellow safety Ryan Clark said. "He's healthy, he's been able to practice every day. ... He's running well, his weight is down, I think that is what's the most important thing, him being in position to stay healthy."

    Polamalu cited Bettis for a long-ago lesson he said he finally learned this year -- not to enter the season with an injury -- although sometimes it cannot be avoided. Last season, Polamalu said he felt as good as he ever had in the 16th game. But he played in just seven games because of his lingering calf injury.

    "I've had the calf problem for the last three, four years and in the offseason it kind of goes away," Polamalu said. "But when you start practicing ... the calf tightens and it eventually goes."

    So he hired a physical therapist in California and worked with him every day in the offseason. The therapist now flies to Pittsburgh every other week so he can work on Polamalu, starting at 5 a.m. each day.

    For now it seems to be working, but as Polamalu well knows and says: "There's still a long ways to go.''

    Jones still a long shot

    Felix Jones "led" the Steelers in rushing Saturday night with 29 yards on eight carries, and he could lead them again Thursday in Carolina because they might use him more than any other back.

    There's no use risking injury to the backs they're counting on.

    Jones, the first-round pick of the Dallas Cowboys in 2008, has an uphill battle to earn a roster spot, but he took one step Sunday when the Steelers released Baron Batch. The Steelers acquired Jones in a trade with the Eagles for outside linebacker Adrian Robinson, who was not going to make the team anyway in his second season here.

    "Obviously, we're short at the running back position," coach Mike Tomlin explained.

    "Isaac Redman didn't play [against Kansas City], LaRod Stephens-Howling didn't play and Le'Veon Bell didn't play. We had an opportunity to acquire a guy that's a known commodity in the NFL. We got him in here at the 11th hour. I thought he did a nice job in terms of preparing and being able to do something for us in the game. We'll continue to get to know him."

    Jonathan Dwyer started Saturday night and had 25 yards on eight carries.

    "I mean, we need an extra body," Dwyer said of Jones' arrival. "We don't have too many guys. It is what it is. If he can help us out, that's fine."

    MAC linebacker stands out

    James Harrison now plays in Cincinnati, but there was an unheralded outside linebacker Saturday night who bore some resemblance to him.

    Alan Baxter, who has done well this summer, came to the forefront in a big way for the Steelers against the Chiefs with two sacks, a tackle for a loss, a forced fumble and a quarterback hurry.

    He's an undrafted, undersized rookie from the Mid-American Conference who stands just 6 feet. Sound familiar? At Northern Illinois, he played in 52 games, started 24 and had 16 career sacks. Baxter is yet another reason the Steelers could afford to trade Robinson for Jones.

    Quick hits

    • The defense had three forced fumbles (one recovered) and a Jarvis Jones interception that was nullified by a penalty to go with five sacks. Those kinds of plays are what the Steelers were looking for the past two seasons in an otherwise No. 1-ranked defense.

    • Redman might start at halfback when the season opens Sept. 8, and he might do so having played in just one preseason game with two carries. There is no reason to risk playing him Thursday at Carolina. He did not suit up Saturday after leaving practice 10 days ago with a stinger.

    • When he has not covered the other team's best receiver and followed him wherever he lines up (except the slot), Ike Taylor has been the Steelers' right cornerback. Saturday night, he played left cornerback and Cortez Allen played on the right. Allen shrugged it off but it's possible the young player is more comfortable playing on the right side.

    • Tackle Kelvin Beachum played plenty of tight end Saturday and could play more while Heath Miller recovers from his knee injury. The Steelers always valued the blocking portion of their tight ends more than the receiving part and nobody says you have to throw to the tight end. The year before Miller arrived, tight ends Jerame Tuman (9), Jay Riemersma (7) and Matt Cushing (1) combined for 17 receptions in 2004 and the Steelers managed to go 15-1.


  8. #8
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    Damn, they don't got no physical therapists in Pittsburgh?

  9. #9

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    Marvin Lewis praises Troy Polamalu’s knowledge of the opposition

    Posted by Mike Wilkening on September 13, 2013

    The Bengals know Steelers safety Troy Polamalu well.

    Too well, actually.

    Both of Polamalu’s regular-season interception return touchdowns have come against the Bengals, with each in a Pittsburgh victory.

    Polamalu’s 11-season Steelers career began in 2003, the same year Marvin Lewis began coaching the Bengals.

    Asked about the Steelers’ playmaking safety on Thursday, Lewis shared a perspective rooted in experience.

    “He does a great job of studying the opponent,” Lewis said, according to a transcript from the Bengals. “He knows your formation tendencies and personnel tendencies. He does a great job of getting himself in position to make plays. You have to account for him, and you have to understand that if this is something unfolding the way you ran it the last couple weeks, he’s probably going to beat you to that spot if you don’t get there in a hurry.”

    The 32-year-old Polamalu played every snap in Pittsburgh’s Week One loss to Tennessee, notching six tackles, including a perfectly timed takedown of Titans quarterback Jake Locker. In a dead sprint, Polamalu tackled Locker just as he took the snap.

    When Polamalu is healthy, the Steelers’ defense can create a little more mayhem.

    As Lewis sees it, that’s a product of preparation.


  10. #10

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    This game will come down to the Steelers secondary. I watched the Bears get shredded by AJ Green and company. And that was against Tillman, one of the better ballhawking CBs in the league. Troy needs to stay back and play the pass. Bengals run game scares no one.


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